Dear Lord,

Before we begin, we just want to thank you for, well, everything. For the air we breathe, the water we drink, the other waters we fish and boat on, dominion over all birds, beasts, and creeping things, and for promising all of it to us, the meek of the earth.

However, as the planet’s current tenants and future inheritors, we have a few concerns about its prospects as our forever home. Specifically, whether there will be anything left for us to inherit. To that end, we’ve put together a small list of concerns we would love for your Almightiness to address before we take you up on your generous offer:

1. Is the plan to pass on the earth as-is, or is there some scope for renovations? Because it doesn’t seem to be in factory condition, as it were. Mostly because of the factories. Between the extensive soil erosion, near-total deforestation, mass extinction, the collapse of oceanic circulation, carbon emissions in the air, forever chemicals in the water, and plastic everywhere else, there’s not much planet left to inherit. After millennia of patiently waiting for the world to come, it would be nice if there was a world to come.

2. Is there any possibility of remediating all the war, murder, colonial violence, religious strife, and general atrocities that have accumulated over the past ten thousand years? We kind of imagined that War, Conquest, Famine, and Death laying waste to humankind was more of a once-in-an-apocalypse kind of thing, not a perennial feature. All those crimes against humanity have really done a number on the place, and we’d love to start fresh without any genocide to spoil the view, if it’s all the same to you.

3. Do the dominant superstructures undergirding our way of life come pre-installed, or can we swap them out for a different operating system? As it turns out, concentrating power and wealth into the hands of a privileged few doesn’t do much for the huddled masses, or really for anyone in the long run (see points 1 and 2). We’d love to install something that’s a little less the divine right of kings and more loaves and fishes for all. A more social kind of “-ism,” if you will.

4. Speaking of individuals who mistake their lot in life as being a divine mandate to be dicks to everyone else, what are your plans for the rich? We’re assuming they’ll leave the premises once we take possession of the planet. Where do they go? Do they still need a camel to fit through a needle before they can pass the pearly gates? Because we have camels and needles if Saint Peter needs them. Some very fat camels. Some very, very small needles. Should a miracle not occur, please don’t trouble your angels with escorting our betters to their just reward. We’ll handle their transport ourselves, free of charge. After all, we might as well use all those camels and needles for something, and it’s such a long, long way to go.

Now, in the event that none of the aforementioned issues are covered under your infinite warranty, does your policy allow us to return the earth for a brand-new one? Preferably a version unshackled by the chains of want and war, untroubled by any divisions over race, creed, or gender, where plenty is to be had and shared, and to which each is afforded according to their need, not by class, geopolitical conditions, or who their parents were.

Some might even call it Heaven.

The Meek of the Earth